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The bin

  • Provide worms with a cool, damp soil environment that is similar to their natural home.
  • A family of four to six worms needs a bin about 30 centimetres high, 60 centimetres wide, and 90 centimetres long. This will be big enough to eventually hold several thousand worms.
  • Make sure that even though the bin's lid has air holes, it keeps out most of the light. Worms need air to breathe, but they are sensitive to light.
  • The bin should also have holes in the bottom to let water drain away. Sit it on a tray to catch the water. The bottom of the bin should be covered with fine nylon mesh to stop the worms escaping through the drainage holes.
  • Place the bin in a spot that has good air circulation.
  • The ideal temperature range is 13–25°C. If the temperature rises to more than 29°C, the worms can die. They will also die if they are allowed to freeze.

The bedding

  • Half-fill a bin with soil and shredded paper. Other materials, such as grass clippings, dried leaves, animal manure, and straw, are also suitable.
  • Dampen the bedding because worms need to stay moist so that they can breathe. If the bedding is too dry or too wet, the worms will die.